THE ART OF GETTING OUT OF POWER 261 later on^ May 19, 1091, when after his term of office at Hangchow he was again asked to resume his old post. This was Su Tungpo's longest autobiographical letter, outlining all the past mishaps that he had run ^ato, including the episode of his arrest and trial The party men were even "more jealous" of him than of his brother. After outlining his ilong political career, he said: "Thus you see a long record of how, by always taking a fearless stand, I have succeeded in making enemies all around me." His letter against Chou Chung had greatly angered his enemies and had increased their hatred. They bristled with attacks. The ancient proverb says: "Enough humming mosquitoes put together can produce a thunder, and a load of enough feathers can sink a boat." He went on: "How can I in my remaining years submit myself to be their target? I know I have done nothing wrong, but nowadays right and wrong have nothing to do with anything. It is natural that, after a long life of trials and tribuktions, I should want to enjoy a life of peace in my remaining years. My request for resignation is entirely sincere. ... If I were to change my nature, and hold on to a coveted post by swimming with the tide, of what real use could I be to Your Majesty? But if I try to keep my own soul and con- tinue as I have been doing, I shall incur the hostility of the petty politicians, and sooner or later must come to the end of my career. . . . Therefore, after careful consideration, I have decided to quit. It is not that I am not grateful to your kindness, but that in my* old age I am ashamed to fight and wrangle with these little wretches, and be laughed at by the high-minded recluse scholars. . . . Please give me a post in the provirice, and do not publish this letter, for my own protection. You may give me a troublesome district on the border if you wish . . - but I am strongly determined not to occupy an important post by your side, so as not to increase the jealousy of the party men and be subjected to further under-handed attacks.'* Following his repeated entreaties the request was granted, on March u, 1089. He was appointed military governor of the province of West Chekiang and commander of the military district of Hangchow, with a very high official rank. The post of governor of West Chekiang gave him jurisdiction over six districts, which included the kke district of modern Kiangsu. He was sent away with imperial gifts of tea and silver boxes and another white hortfe with gold-plated saddle and a gold belt for his official gown. This was one horse too many for Su, and he gave it away to his poor disciple Li Chih to sell for money.